Good times abound during Maryland's 10-day Preakness festival. On land, sea and air, events will spring up across the state, including a rodeo, an antique aircraft fly-in, Olympic canoeing and kayaking and, by gosh, even some horse racing. Many of the events will be free and custom made for the hobbyhorse set and their parents. For footloose revelers, there will be good times rolling at area nightspots. And if you aren't exactly experiencing life in the fast lane, there will be leisurely moments with crafts, fishing, historical re-enactments and events that will require little more than filling your face with good eats.
FRIDAY, MAY 8
Media Balloon Flight. Oregon Ridge Park, Cockeysville. 6:30 a.m. This year's three-day, four-event balloon festival features more than 30 hot-air balloons. (410) 837-3030. Free.
Bud Light Nights. Water Street's block parties run nightly through May 15 (except Sunday, May 10). 5:30 p.m.-midnight. Refreshments, dancing, live entertainment. (410) 837-3030. Free with your Preakness pin.
Pear Tree Festival. Mini Park, Downtown Pocomoke. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Crafts, food, children's entertainment, music. Also, May 9. (410) 957-0972. Free.
29th Annual YWCA Circle Promenade. Lawyers Mall, Annapolis. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Street festival with arts, crafts, food, entertainment. Also, May 9. (410) 268-5093. Free.
Hunt Valley Mall Preakness Fashion Show. Hunt Valley Mall. Noon-2 p.m. informal fashion show for the "equestrian look" featuring Miss Preakness, her court. (410) 785-3770. Free.
Lunchtime With the Orioles. Harborplace Amphitheatre. Noon. Baltimore Orioles players sign autographs, meet fans with WBAL's Joe Angel. (410) 332-4191. Free.
Baltimore African Violet Club Plant Show, Sale. Towson Market Place. 1:30 p.m.-9 p.m. Largest African violet show in the region. Also, May 8. (410) 682-5473. Free.
SATURDAY, MAY 9
First National Bank Hot Air Balloon Competition and Children's Festival. Druid Hill Park liftoff between 6:30 a.m.-7 a.m. Festival complete with rides, clowns, music by the Bayside Big Band, miniature horses from Valhalla Farm, Spectrum Puppets Productions, refreshments. The zoo opens at 9 a.m., admission is $1 off with Preakness pin. (410) 837-3030. Festivities are free with Preakness pin.
$700,000 Pimlico Special. Rich stakes races featuring former Triple Crown competitors at Pimlico Race Course. Post time 12:30 p.m. (410) 542-9400. Admission.
Crown Petroleum Balloonglow and Concert. Brightly lit hot-air balloons amid vendors, rides, arts, crafts from 4 p.m.-10 p.m. in Oregon Ridge Park, Cockeysville. WPOC-FM (93.1) presents performers Joe Diffie, Collin Ray, Marge Calhoun 4:30 p.m. Proceeds benefit the Kennedy Krieger Institute, United Cerebral Palsy. (410) 837-3030. Admission $10, kids under 8 free; $4 off admission with Preakness pin.
Shock Trauma Gala: "Festival Internationale." Towson Center, Towson. 7 p.m.-midnight. Black-tie event features dinner, dancing to live entertainment. Proceeds to benefit the Trauma ,, Nursing Center, the EMS Field Program, the Charles McC. Mathias National Study Center. (410) 328-8778. Ticket required.
Laurel Main Street Festival. Main Street, Laurel. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. More than 400 exhibits, arts, crafts, food, music, a parade. (301) 317-4904. Free.
Market Day at the Cylburn Arboretum. 4915 Greenspring Ave. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Fair features plants, native wildflowers, rum buns, more. (410) 367-2217. Free.
15th Annual Rites of Spring Rugby Tournament. Lake Clifton-Eastern High School. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Fifty rugby teams from around the East Coast participate, hosted by the Baltimore Boars Rugby Club. Also, May 10. (410) 252-7950. Free.
Westminster Flower and Craft Show. Main Street, downtown Westminster. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Thousands of plants, flowers for sale, entertainment all day. (410) 848-6962. Free.
Marlborough Day. Main Street, Governor Oden Bowie Drive, Upper Marlboro. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Four stages with family entertainment, a parade, children's activities, crafts, food. (301) 292-9006. Free.
May Day. Chesapeake City. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tours of horse farms, boat tours, antique show. (301) 885-2797. Free.
Scout Expo '92. Maryland State Fairgrounds, Timonium. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Exhibition of scouting skills, demonstrations, stage show, with food, souvenirs available. (410) 338-1700. Admission.
Ellicott City May Arts Festival. Ellicott City. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. 11th annual event features more than 100 artisans, craftspeople, entertainment, food. (410) 313-2762. Admission.
International Festival . . . A Circle of Friends. New Windsor Service Center Campus. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. International entertainment, foods, crafts, children's activities. (410) 635-8715. Free.
Mayfest. Christmas Country Store, Bohemia. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Hands-on crafts for children, refreshments, local arts, crafts. (301) 994-1770. Free.
Mayfest. Everedy Square, Shab Row, Frederick. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Performing arts, sculpting, musical performances, children's events. (301) 662-4140. Free.
250th Worcester County Joust. Delmarva Downs, Berlin. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Eastern Shore jousting tournament with a Renaissance theme. (800) 852-0335. Admission.
5th Annual Fells Point Preakness Celebration. Fells Point Market Square, Baltimore. Noon. Live music, arts, crafts, fun, food. Also, May 10. (410) 675-0898. Free.
Mickey and Minnie Celebrate the Preakness. Disney Store at the Gallery. Noon-4 p.m. Mickey, Minnie Mouse visit the Disney Store. (410) 332-4191. Free.
White Marlin Boardwalk Parade and Festival. Boardwalk, Ocean City. 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Official "marching in" of the resort's summer season. (410) 289-1413. Free.
SUNDAY, MAY 10
Mother's Day Balloon Competition. Oregon Ridge Park, Cockeysville. 7 a.m. liftoff. (410) 837-3030. Free.
Maryland Preakness Celebration Potomac Hunt Races 40th Annual Steeplechase. River and Partnership roads, Seneca. 12:30 p.m. (202) 862-2873. Admission.
Picnic Sunday Cookouts. Boordy Vineyards, Hydes. 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Complimentary tastings, tour of the winery -- free with Preakness pin. Reservations required. Also, May 17. (410) 592-5015. Admission.
Preakness Polo Classic. Laden Field, Monkton. 3 p.m.-5 p.m. High-goal players from Argentina, Long Island, Florida, Maryland compete. This year's sponsors include Range Rover, Mercedes. In case of rain, to be held at Elkridge Harford Hunt Club. (410) 557-6448. Admission.
MONDAY, MAY 11
Tour Du Pont. Afternoon finish of more than 120 world-class cyclists in downtown Hagerstown in America's premier cycling competition. Morning start on May 12 out of Sharpsburg on the way to the Massanutten Resort in Virginia. (804) 354-9934. Free.
Sunrise at Old Hilltop. Pimlico Race Course. 7 a.m. Tours of Pimlico, including the backstretch, as well as visits with Preakness Stakes competitors. Also, May 12-15. (410) 542-9400. Free.
2nd Annual Ocean City Golf Fest. Held at five courses throughout the Greater Ocean City Area. 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Also, May 13-15. (800) 4-OC-GOLF. Admission.
Phillips Preakness Celebration Crab Picking Contest. Harborplace Amphitheatre. Noon. Local celebrities compete to
pick the most crab meat. (410) 332-4191. Free.
TUESDAY, MAY 12
Tour du Pont. Rise and shine and watch world-class cyclists as they head out of Sharpsburg on their way to Virginia. (804) 354-9934.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 13
Pee-Wee Preakness. Rash Field in Inner Harbor. Children race on hobbyhorses as mascots cheer on the young "jockeys." 11 a.m.-1 p.m. (410) 837-4636. Free.
AT&T; Great Schooner Race. Historic schooners compete against each other at 3 p.m. from the Inner Harbor Finer Piers. Witness race from docks. (410) 837-3030. Free.
Maryland Preakness Celebration Frog Hop. Fells Point, Broadway Market Square. Noon-1 p.m. Frogs must be 4 inches from nose to tail. Winning frog goes on to Calaveras County frog-jumping jubilee in California. (410) 396-9177. Free.
Clyde Beatty Cole Brothers Circus. Naval Academy Stadium, Annapolis. Showtimes: 4:30 p.m., 8 p.m. Also, May 14. (301) 263-1128. Admission.
THURSDAY, MAY 14
Paolo Gucci Triple Crown Ball. Black-tie extravaganza, featuring performance by Tony Orlando and Dawn, Hyatt Regency in Inner Harbor, 7 p.m. Proceeds benefit Retinitis Pigmentosa Foundation. (410) 837-3030. Ticket required.
Media Crab Derby. Lexington Market. 1 p.m. Local radio, television personalities pick crabs, race them in honor of the Preakness Stakes. (410) 685-6169. Free.
Preakness Night at Wurlitzer's. Marriott's Hunt Valley Inn. 5:30 // p.m.-midnight. Music, dancing, hotel giveaways as well as a visit by Miss Preakness and her court. Proceeds benefit the 1993 Miss Preakness Pageant Scholarship Fund. (410) 785-7000, extension 6444. Admission.
International Museum Day Celebration. Maryland Museum of African Art, Columbia. 7 p.m.-9 Honoring museum volunteers as part of International Museum Week. (410) 730-7105. Free.
FRIDAY, MAY 15
Maryland Preakness Celebration Parade. Floats, helium balloon characters, mounted units, marching bands. Charles Street to the Inner Harbor. If you can't be there, tune into WBAL-TV 11 from 7:30 p.m.-9 p.m. for live coverage. (410) 837-3030. Free.
18th Annual Frederick Craft Fair. Frederick Fairgounds, Frederick. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Featuring more than 300 of America's top craft designers, music, refreshments. Also, May 16-17. (717) 369-4810. Admission.
St. Pius X Church, School Carnival. 6428 York Road, Towson. 4 p.m.-10 p.m. Amusement rides, baked goods, wheels of fortune. Also, May 16-17. (410) 377-7440. Free.
SATURDAY, MAY 16
The 117th Running of the Preakness Stakes. Pimlico Race Course. The finest 3-year-olds in the United States compete in the middle jewel of Thoroughbred racing's prestigious Triple Crown. Gates open at 8:30 a.m., with the first post time at 11:30 a.m. (410) 542-9400. Admission.
1991 Preakness Infield Concert. Live music, prize giveaways. Festivities begin at 11 a.m. (410) 542-9400. Admission.
U.S. Canoe and Kayak Team Olympic Trials. Savage River in Bloomington. 9 a.m. One hundred athletes will compete for 15 spots on the Olympic team. Also, May 17. (301) 387-6666. Admission.
MSSA Bluefish Tournament. Held on Chesapeake Bay, its tributaries. 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Largest bluefish tournament on the East Coast. Also, May 17. (410) 768-8666. Admission.
Antique Aircraft Fly-in. University of Maryland laboratories, Cambridge. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Antique aircraft from around the East Coast fly in a judged competition. Also, May 17. (410) 228-1899. Free.
Armed Forces Day at the Aberdeen Proving Ground. Aberdeen. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Aerobatic air show with civilian, military static displays, games, a Civil War re-enactment, parachute drops. Children welcome. (410) 278-9253. Free.
Civil War Living History Demonstrations. Jonathan Hager House and Museum, Hagerstown. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Open to the public. Five Civil War units depicting the life of the Civil War soldier. Also, May 17. (301) 739-8393. Free.
10th Annual Italian Festival. Heritage Park, Dundalk. Noon-10 p.m. Rides, games, food, entertainment. Closing music on Sunday by Ashtin Golt. (410) 887-7155. Admission.
National Pike Festival. Along Route 40 in Clear Spring, Funkstown, Boonsboro. Celebration in Hancock. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. A celebration of Route 40 -- the road that made the nation. Also, May 17. (301) 791-3130. Free.
2nd Annual Rodeo. Anne Arundel County Fairgounds, Crownsville. Show times: 2 p.m., 7 p.m. Food, fun, rodeo action. Also, May 17. (410) 923-3400. Admission.
Preakness Semi-Formal Dance. Mason's Hall, Gorsuch Avenue off Harford Road. 9 p.m. Disc jockey, door prizes. Sponsored by the West Indian Ballroom Dance and Cultural Association of Maryland Inc. (410) 426-8705. Admission.
SUNDAY, MAY 17
Pre-Constellation Preakness Ride, Run, Romp and Roll for Affordable Housing. Downtown Baltimore, South and Pratt streets. 8:30 a.m. Run, bike, skate or walk 10-K course to benefit affordable housing projects in Baltimore's metro area. (410) 727-3562. Admission.
A Tasting at the Station. Green Spring Station, Lutherville. 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Wines from around the world, international food, live music. Reservations required. (410) 837-7150. Admission.
Arbutus Arts Festival. East Drive, Arbutus. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. A community beautification festival featuring arts, crafts, handmade goods. (410) 247-2866. Free.
Great Strides Walk to Cure Cystic Fibrosis. Oregon Ridge Park, Cockeysville. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. A nationwide 10-K walk to benefit Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. (410) 771-9000. Pledges required to participate.
5th Annual Preakness Auction and Champagne Brunch. Harbor Court Hotel, Baltimore. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Champagne brunch featuring silent, live auctions with items donated by Baltimore's Best, sponsored by the Bank of Baltimore for the Baltimore Association for Retarded Citizens. (410) 323-5600. Admission.
Beltsville Celebration of the Outdoors. Beltsville Community Center. Noon-5 p.m. Family entertainment, including music, refreshments, environmental displays. (301) 937-6613. Free.
Rose Hill Day Festival. Rose Hill Manor Museum, Frederick. Noon-4 p.m. 200th anniversary celebration featuring special children's activities with hands-on experiences. Antique show, Colonial craft show. (301) 694-1648. Free.
Heritage Day. Blair Stables, Bowie. 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Colonial crafts, music, tours, refreshments. (301) 262-6200. Free.
Preakness Block Festival. Lake Clifton Park. 2 p.m. Ethnic foods, music, folk dances. Sponsored by the West Indian Ballroom Dance and Cultural Association of Maryland Inc. (410) 675-7277. Free.